Building on a sloping block
Designing and building your home on a sloping block is an exciting opportunity to build a dream home to capture those stunning views, and the character of an undulating site means the design of your home must be highly considered to maximise the site’s full potential.
It’s important to understand some of the building challenges that come with a sloping block. The position of the house on the block, drainage requirements, and building and council compliance to name a few, so working with a professional builder that understands the site and has expertise with sloping blocks is paramount.
- Design: The design of the home will generally follow the contour of the land, allowing it to have multiple levels and should take full advantage of any sweeping views. As the home will probably be a prominent feature of the landscape, the quality of the design and selection of materials is an important consideration.
- Build quality: Another key to success when building on a sloping block is the build quality. The quality of construction is important because sloping blocks have their particular construction challenges that have to be addressed.
- Excavation: Depending on the gradient of the slope, there’s a high probability you’ll need to cut into the hillside in order to create a flat platform that will serve as the foundation of your home. You may also need a series of piers or stumps to form the other end of the base. These methods will probably require retaining walls and a lot of soil displacement, which can be expensive. Be aware that soil depths can be relatively shallow, so you may have a likelihood of striking rock. So when we design your home, we aim to minimise any unnecessary excavation by working with the block, not against it.
- Foundations: Sloping blocks often require deeper foundations or footings to form a solid, level surface to build on. They can also pose some interesting landscaping opportunities requiring one or more retaining walls to be integrated to address issues of erosion. The ever-important system of drainage needs smart planning to avoid pools of water collecting behind walls or at the bottom of a steep hill.
Generally when people think about building on a sloping block, they think about a home out of ground on a timber sub-floor. This is one of a number of techniques potentially allowing options for a basement service area or multi car garage. As a custom luxury home builder, we can offer a range of different design solutions and construction techniques to maximise your site’s potential.
With our extensive experience in this type of construction we can anticipate most potential problems from the outset. Our architects and building team are specialists in their fields resulting in a smoother building process ensuring a custom built luxury home that is uniquely yours.
Posted: 6th June 2016